5 Things Your Vet is Thinking in the Exam Room

Ever wonder what is going through your vet’s head when you’re in the exam room with them with your pet? The answer is: many things.  Animal handling and safety, excellent client service, finances and costs, patient history, and of course medicine, are repeatedly circulating through our brains. It can be challenging of course, but with your help, we do our best.  Still, to help pet owners as well as their vets when appointment time comes, I hereby present my “5 things your vet is thinking in the examination room”…

1. Am I going to get bit here?

Please warn me if your pet is potentially unsafe. I promise I won’t judge you or your pet or think he or she is “bad”. We’re well aware that many pets are not themselves in an animal clinic, and yes, some pets have grumpier dispositions in general but that’s ok. We can work with that. We just need to know so we can keep ourselves, our staff, you, your pet, and other pets safe.

2. What exactly has been going on?

Please tell me what’s been going on with your pet in an objective, chronological, open and honest fashion. Don’t be shy or nervous to be honest with us – if you never brush his teeth, or she got into your own medication, or the diarrhea has actually been going on for a month instead of a week – again, we’re not here to judge, we’re here to help, and you best enable us to do that with accurate information.

3. Just tell me if this gets too pricey.

Please don’t be shy to tell us what you may not be able to afford. Medicine can get expensive quickly, and we certainly understand that. I’ve had some pet owners who are embarrassed or intimidated to be forthcoming with what expenses they can and cannot handle. It is important to understand that our first recommendation will always be what is medically best and appropriate for your pet, regardless of financial situations. From here, we are happy to discuss these recommendations and other options with you; we consider the value of recommendations in the given situation and work to mediate a plan that works to help the patient while remaining affordable for you.

4. This little doggie needs to be examined away from Mom or Dad. 

Little dogs are cute, and they love being in their owner’s arms. Once in a while these little wigglers can become quite challenging to examine and especially to vaccinate. Sometimes I’ll have an assistant come in the exam room with me to help restrain these pups, but often, for whatever reason, these dogs are much more still, calm, and cooperative when they’re taken away from their darling Mommy or Daddy, and are examined and vaccinated in our treatment room.

5. Why does this woman keep talking to me when I have my stethoscope in my ears? Does she think I can hear her? 

This is half comedy and half serious. You’ve probably done it at least once, but don’t worry, it happens all the time! 🙂